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Planning For The Six Areas Outdoor


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Hello

 

I need help with our outdoor, firstly we have freeflow system which works sometimes, when staff can be bother, i.e don't sit around chatting or sunbathing :o . I need to set up the garden in the six areas but would like some input on how to go about it. Such as what resources do you need for each area. We have the usual water, sand, painting, we have bikes, but what l want is really a defined area for each learning development with suitable resources. xD

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hi it is such a tricky area outdoors so i feel for you,

i begged and grovelled for some drawer units and got lucky as the year 6' were being replaced, so i bough new trays a different colour for a differen area! then any big resources i put in boxes of matching colours. I would set these up in a morning and the children ust learn that the boxes and drawers stay where they are but they can use the things however they want.

 

the second thing free flow and supervision, my outdoor area is down a corridor from my class, so i bought a pack of feet things like footprints and i put them down leading from the door to the outdoor provision door. The children have their own teddy with their name on and some velcro which they just stick up before they go out so at a glance i can see who is outside. As for the adults im a meanine and i timetable so everyone has their fair share! My ta was not confident outside so i let her watch me with the children outside. oher than that im in the middle of trying to improve it so i m sorry and i have probably just told you things you already knew! good luck and let us know how you get on x

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One thing I have seen, and I am planning to do, is having a trolley with lots of different writing resources that you can just wheel outside. Another one is having different resource boxes that children can access e.g. mini-beast box (tick-sheets with mini-beasts on, nets, magnifying glasses etc.), windy day box (ribbons on sticks, wind socks, kites etc.) and so on. I am starting a new job with no outside provision in September, aaaargh! Lots to do!

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One thing I have seen, and I am planning to do, is having a trolley with lots of different writing resources that you can just wheel outside. Another one is having different resource boxes that children can access e.g. mini-beast box (tick-sheets with mini-beasts on, nets, magnifying glasses etc.), windy day box (ribbons on sticks, wind socks, kites etc.) and so on. I am starting a new job with no outside provision in September, aaaargh! Lots to do!

 

thats the kind of thing im hoping to implement for september too, a reading / book box with cushions and picnic blankets etc , writing / drawing box , home corner box . so it makes it easier to make sure the boxes are set up ready for the next session -as i very often get outtside and think arrgghh ...i need such and such !

it also makes it easier for the children at tidy time - all the boxes will be pictured and labelled so they are able to see what goes where -rather than just runnning in and out with the odd pencil or dolly !

 

i shall watch this thread for some more ideas too !

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Do you have a garden area outside? If you do, you have the chance to cover all the six areas and more! In our new garden we've studied and talked about snails, planted herbs, veg and fruit, scattered annual seeds and watched them grow, explored textures of plant leaves, pine cones, etc. Watched tadpoles grow into frogs, done hopscotch on our stepping stones and so on and on.

 

Even if you don't have a 'proper' garden, you can still do stuff in pots and tubs (our tadpoles were in a bucket for a long time, until we got our pond finished!)

 

For marking making, we've been giving the children a box of chalks and letting them get on with things.

 

I'm not convinced you need to be getting lots of different drawers outside, if you think about the way a child would interact with the outdoor spaces in the home, it's more a case of doing the stuff that naturally takes place outside.

 

I've also been trying to persuade our leader to have a few 'ride on free' days as these are quite narrow in terms of learning, unless you set up extension stuff such as drawing roads or building a petrol pump out of boxes.

 

Of course there's also the chance to make a mess without worrying too much!

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i went on an outdoor provision course with Ros Bailey and she was amazing!i almost walked out at lunch to go get cracking with my ideas but i stayed because there was profiteroles mmmm yum!

i always try to bear (is that the right spelling?) in mind that your outdoor area should reflect inside x

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We have really enjoyed having free access into the playground over the last few months, the children are so much happier with more space and freedom.

 

We have had a wide selection of activities going on. The usual sand, water and painting, a few cars and bikes, play house, shop, musical instruments, books etc. We are going to set up a washing line with household items on for the children to experiment with sound making. One of their favourite activities for outside is a bucket of water and some paint brushes and just let them make patterns on the walls. For windy days we have a kite, ribbon sticks and bubbles. We are unable to leave the door open in the winter though so it will be just a matter of letting a few children out at a time and fewer activities.

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During the summer term I introduced some pieces of getterring in my outside space. I have a small outside play area and so attached 3 pieces on my fences at angles so the children could pour water or roll balls down them and try and catch them at the end. I also left a few pieces out for them to use how they wanted and they often made water ways and experimented with different amounts of water and at different angles...they loved it and it would keep them amused during the whole PDR session! :o

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First post,here goes.

Glad someone else thinks bikes and ride ons can be a bit limited on the learning front.

We used to have bikes around our main area as this gave the riders places to go and routes to follow but in the end they tended to just limit other sorts of physical play - running, throwing, hula hooping etc As we extended our outdoor construction (pile of junk) we had to limit them as safety issues arose and we couldnt devote enough time to supporting children in sensible riding behaviour.

Fortunately we can zone them off to one corner and now have less bikes out and lots of other things going on outside.

Bikes are great for physical development and even for learning to share but

we are a big setting and unless we can spare an adult to model and prompt extensions they tend not to happen.Even leaving a zebra crossing ,toy petrol pump and till didnt really take off in child led play.

If you havent got somewhere else to zone bikes to I really think it is worth having bike free days and observing how the play changes.

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Fridays are bike free. Children know that and respond well from realising when the calendar is done that its a Friday to inciating other play which often involves imaginative role play journeys when building planes/boats and trains with the blocks.

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Welcome to the Forum, HEK!

 

Every day is a bike free day in our setting - one of the first thing I did when I took over was to gradually weed out the bikes and ride ons as they got old and past it. We are a very small setting and the bikes were not only taking up precious storage space in our little play house, but we found that there was always a queue of children waiting for the high status bikes to be available.

 

We have replaced them with more open resources and the bikes are long forgotten. That said, I know that every child in my setting has a bike and somewhere to ride it at home. I'd need to re-think the strategy if I knew some children didn't have this luxury.

 

Maz

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I am just about to do as Maz and will be sending them off to the tip next week :o . They are totally past their sell by date and as others have said, they created a queue of children who would not do anything else for fear of missing their turn. Thanks Maz you have reinforced my determination to chuck them out now!

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Thanks Maz you have reinforced my determination to chuck them out now!

You're welcome Holly - about the only thing I could say in defence of the bikes was that children learned to take turns and wait patiently - but since we couldn't persuade them to go and do something else instead whilst they waited, taking turns and being patient was very boring sitting down watching everyone else enjoying themselves! I have to say that since the bikes have gone, the children are much more engaged in games outside and are really using their imagination and creativity.

 

Maz

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Hmm we were working towards taking turns and waiting patiently but it was taking one or two staff members to support just that!

 

On another note I have just been looking back through this thread and the idea of the six areas of learning outdoors. I recently went to some outdoor play training where the trainer commented that it might not be necessary to replicate the indoors outside as the outdoors was essentially different to indoors. I do hope I didn't misinterpret her, but it seemed to me that this was saying, yes have mark making outside but make it outside mark making, say big paintbrushes and water, rather than another set of pencils and crayons. And have sand and water outside, but use something else inside as an indoor sensory experience. It has freed me up no end at work as we simply don't have the room to accommodate everything inside and outside, and I plan to use this argument when I get hauled over the coals for not having indoor and outdoor sand!

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Never had bikes or sit ons!! Children don't even mention them, occasionally one or two bring in scooters and if they wanted they could take them outside, I wouldn't say no, but if they caused problems then the scooters would have to stay inside, unused. What did cause one or two aggravations last term was the use of the buggies and prams outside by some of the boys - they use these items in quite a different fashion - these had to be banned from going outside every now and then I'm afraid (the prams, not the boys!!). We too are in a fairly affluent area and I am aware that all the children have access to bikes etc. at home.

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What did cause one or two aggravations last term was the use of the buggies and prams outside by some of the boys - they use these items in quite a different fashion - these had to be banned from going outside every now and then I'm afraid (the prams, not the boys!!).

Our outdoor buggies are going soon too, Panders once I can find some different resources the boys can use to transport stuff from one end of the garden to the othe without running at 70 miles per hour and upsetting everyone!

 

Maz

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our setting is in an area where there are a lot of flats and terraced housing with no gardens . 1 small drab and dirty park and a lovely big one up a large hill. A lot of our children do not have sit and ride toys and it shows in how they use them. Our own outside area is tiny we do sit and ride and many more gross motor activities inside . We plan our outside for mark making role play maths sand etc on a larger scale than indoors or as much as we can in the space we have.I think if you plan imaginatively for all areas in and out so that children have access to all areas during a session it doesn't really matter. In our case it is just the way it is. I so agree about boys and buggies we purchased pull along trolleys for transporting and wheelbarrows and some great wobble shells all the kids love and they don't need a great deal of space.

sorry seem to have waffled about physical play but it is in defence of sit and ride toys

sue

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By having wheel free fridays-not just bikes we feel we are meeting the children who have/have not access or availablity of outdoor play at home. We have a very broad intake from low income families in rented 2nd floor housing to 4 bed detached on private estate. We find our Asian children do not have bikes culturally (especially girls) and the children on the estate ride poor quality equipment in an unsafe enviroment like the roads! We use a sand timer for waiting turns which the children police themselves after input as its visual which frees the member of staff. I would like to make wheel free 2 days not one but I think it maybe something to look at when we have seen the new intakes needs.

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Our outdoor buggies are going soon too, Panders once I can find some different resources the boys can use to transport stuff from one end of the garden to the othe without running at 70 miles per hour and upsetting everyone!

 

Maz

 

I have always hankered after those trolley type things you see in American films which the children pull behind themselves. I think Community Playthings do them. Must go and take a look

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I have always hankered after those trolley type things you see in American films which the children pull behind themselves. I think Community Playthings do them. Must go and take a look

Would love one of those but I'm afraid it would take up half our storage space!

 

Maz

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Going back to six areas..we have created a den making area in our outside area which the children absolutely love. We asked a local dairy if we could have some of their old plastic milk crates. We then got some thin wooden planks of wood (varnished to prevent splinters) and lots of old sheets from a local charity. We also rig up string across fence panels and provide pegs to help with construction. It is a real fun area for children and adults alike and it ticks lots of boxes as far as curriculum is concerned.

Redbase :o

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Do you have a garden area outside? If you do, you have the chance to cover all the six areas and more! In our new garden we've studied and talked about snails, planted herbs, veg and fruit, scattered annual seeds and watched them grow, explored textures of plant leaves, pine cones, etc. Watched tadpoles grow into frogs, done hopscotch on our stepping stones and so on and on.

 

Even if you don't have a 'proper' garden, you can still do stuff in pots and tubs (our tadpoles were in a bucket for a long time, until we got our pond finished!)

 

For marking making, we've been giving the children a box of chalks and letting them get on with things.

 

I'm not convinced you need to be getting lots of different drawers outside, if you think about the way a child would interact with the outdoor spaces in the home, it's more a case of doing the stuff that naturally takes place outside.

 

I've also been trying to persuade our leader to have a few 'ride on free' days as these are quite narrow in terms of learning, unless you set up extension stuff such as drawing roads or building a petrol pump out of boxes.

 

Of course there's also the chance to make a mess without worrying too much!

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Would love one of those but I'm afraid it would take up half our storage space!

 

Maz

 

 

My Dad made us one out of one of those wooden 'baby walker' things you get wooden blocks in. It's long since collapsed but lasted for several years and was very well loved! He made a T shaped handle that was attached to the base of the trolley with a hinge bit and was painted red. It was great!

 

Sorry - tried to add a picture of a wooden trolley from ebay

 

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Wooden-baby-walker-w...id=p3286.c0.m14

 

There's the link to it if you need to know what I'm talking about!

Edited by Cait
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